cray·​fish | \ ˈkrā-ˌfish How to pronounce crayfish (audio) \

Definition of crayfish

1 : any of numerous freshwater decapod crustaceans (especially families Astacidea, Cambaridae, and Parastacidae) resembling the lobster but usually much smaller

Illustration of crayfish

Illustration of crayfish

crayfish 1

Examples of crayfish in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web That lofty ranking is driven largely by the state’s rivers, and its large number of species of freshwater fish, crayfish, mussels, snails, frogs and amphibians. Dennis Pillion |, al, 5 May 2022 The cave-dwelling crayfish lack any pigment and are blind. Wired, 10 July 2022 Unable to push through it on their daily commute, the crayfish largely vanished. New York Times, 1 June 2022 Click here to read more about the UAH crayfish discovery. Paul Gattis |, al, 1 June 2022 The lake and surrounding area provide a habitat for wildlife such as great blue herons, crayfish, bullfrogs, snapping turtles, northern water snakes and dragonflies. Karie Angell Luc, Chicago Tribune, 25 Apr. 2022 Animals like the black-footed ferret and California condor are represented, but so are groups often left out of such analyses: species of bees, butterflies, fish, mussels, crayfish and flowering plants. New York Times, 3 Mar. 2022 Emerald shiner minnows and crayfish worked close to the river bottom in deeper pools are best for tempting bass to bite. cleveland, 28 Apr. 2022 Researchers have also used eDNA to find a rare cave crayfish in Alabama and to map out where to find long, pale, aquatic salamanders called olms, in Croatia. James Gaines, Wired, 12 Feb. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crayfish.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of crayfish

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crayfish

by folk etymology from Middle English crevis, from Anglo-French creveis, escreveice, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German krebiz crab — more at crab

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The first known use of crayfish was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

7 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Crayfish.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for crayfish


cray·​fish | \ ˈkrā-ˌfish How to pronounce crayfish (audio) \
plural crayfish

Kids Definition of crayfish

1 : a freshwater shellfish that looks like the related lobster but is much smaller

More from Merriam-Webster on crayfish

Nglish: Translation of crayfish for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crayfish for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about crayfish


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